BGF has invested a total of £14.5m in Victoria PLC, (LSE: VCP) the manufacturer, supplier and distributor of design-led carpets and floorcoverings, making an initial investment in September 2014. This was BGF's first investment in a publicly listed company.

Founded in 1895, Victoria designs, manufactures and distributes carpets and other floor coverings, targeting the mid to high-end market under a number of different brands. Headquartered in Kidderminster and with manufacturing and retail operations in Australia, the business employs over 600 people.

Victoria’s carpets are found in Buckingham Palace, Balmoral Castle, and several other Royal residences - and it manufactured the carpet used in Westminster Abbey for the Royal Wedding and was recently granted a Royal Warrant to Her Majesty The Queen.

Our initial investment took the form of loan notes with a cash-paid coupon, with no capital repayment for the first five years and the capital then repaid over the following three years, as well as an option to buy equity in Victoria PLC at a later date. The investment was unsecured and flexible, in line with our approach as a provider of capital to support companies’ development over the longer term. BGF's Gavin Petken serves as a non-executive director on Victoria’s Board.

Victoria is led by executive Chairman, Geoff Wilding, who successfully oversaw the acquisition and integration of Westex, which was purchased by Victoria in December 2013.

Victoria acquired Abingdon Flooring Limited, a UK carpet manufacturer, at the time of our first investment and Rossendale-based Interfloor Group in September 2015.

The business was awarded the ICAEW’s Corporate Development Award 2015 in recognition of its fast growth across the UK.

“Victoria has built a fantastic reputation in the UK and overseas for supplying a wide range of quality flooring materials at a range of price points, with high levels of service. We saw this as an excellent opportunity to back a company with global ambitions and the potential to expand organically and through acquisitions such as Abingdon which adds significantly to the Group’s product offering.

“While Victoria is a listed company, we view it in the same way as our private portfolio companies; a strong UK business with significant growth prospects. For this reason, we are delighted to be working with Geoff and his team.” Gavin Petken, BGF